The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 16.11637  Thursday, 30 June 2005

From:           Al Magary <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 30 Jun 2005 00:37:10 -0700
Subject:        Bard Goes Broadband

The Bard Goes Broadband

icCoventry.co.uk, June 29, 2005


The latest wireless broadband technology is being harnessed to give
tourists a more modern experience of William Shakespeare's home town in
Warwickshire, it was announced today.

Visitors to the bard's birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon will be able to
hire hand-held personal digital assistant (PDA) devices to get an online
insight into the town's cultural and artistic heritage.

Project director Tim Luft believes using new technology could breathe
new life into tourist destinations whose popularity has until now relied
solely on guidebooks and word-of-mouth.

"The launch of Stratford Unplugged marks an exciting new chapter for
tourism in one of the UK's most famous and best-loved towns," he said.

"Using the latest BT wireless broadband in this innovative way will
enable us to give people a completely new visitor experience.

"Given Stratford's rich heritage, it is fitting that it should take
centre stage in taking UK tourism into a new age to preserve such a
significant era by embracing exciting developing communications
technologies in this way, to the benefit of the town and the industries
upon which it depends for its livelihood."

The scheme, which uses public access wireless broadband hotspots, has
been developed by BT with Coventry University, Staffordshire University,
Hewlett Packard and Stratford town centre's management team.

Information on attractions is beamed via tiny aerials near the most
popular attractions to the pocket diary-sized device as visitors pass.

Users can also browse the Internet on the move as well as send
photographs to family and friends as they take in the sights.

Frank Mills, BT's regional director for the West Midlands, said: "The
12-month pilot is the first of its kind in the UK and marks a
significant step in the development and growth of e-tourism.

[Similar story at BBC News:

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